Let’s see if I understand this correctly: the United States Department of Justice cannot investigate the National Security Agency’s warrantless eavesdropping program because its lawyers don’t have a high enough security clearance. According to the AP:
“The inquiry headed by the Justice Department’s Office of Professional Responsibility, or OPR, sent a fax to Rep. Maurice Hinchey, D-N.Y., on Wednesday saying they were closing their inquiry because without clearance their lawyers cannot examine Justice lawyers’ role in the program.
“We have been unable to make any meaningful progress in our investigation because OPR has been denied security clearances for access to information about the NSA program,” OPR counsel H. Marshall Jarrett wrote to Hinchey.”
In other words, the government does not have the security clearance to investigate itself.
Remember, the President said back in January that the investigation would be “good for democracy.” Just not good enough that he would actually let it proceed. Hiding behind the veil of “national security,” the Bush administration has proven once again that it will continue to act in complete defiance of anyone who would question its right to trample our freedoms, even itself. Orwell tried to predict it, in pre-war, Socialist Britain when he had Syme tell Winston: “Don’t you see that the whole aim of Newspeak is to narrow the range of thought?… Has it ever occurred to your, Winston, that by the year 2050, at the very latest, not a single human being will be alive who could understand such a conversation as we are having now?…The whole climate of thought will be different. In fact, there will be no thought, as we understand it now. Orthodoxy means not thinking—not needing to think. Orthodoxy is unconsciousness.”
To create the unconsciousness of the new political orthodoxy, Bush has nominated the man who created warrantless eavesdropping, the NSA’s own General Michael Hayden. And as The Daily Show’s Jon Stewart noted, he did it with the exact words he had used to nominate Hayden’s predecessor, because he knew that we were already all but unconscious.
Who’s going to question it? Who’s going to stop them? Congress? The military? The people? No, we’re all busy, thank you, filling up our Hummers and betting on oil futures. Not a single human being alive can even understand the conversation.